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Swimming Downhill

In the swimming world, you often hear top coaches refer to the concept of “swimming downhill”.
But what does this mean? Technically, swimming downhill refers to placing your body and core in an ideal position to reduce drag in the water.  In plain speak it means getting your hips up and your head down.

The idea behind swimming downhill is that you should use your body, and especially your head,
to maintain a high hip position in the water. The position of your hips is directly connected to your head position almost like a see-saw. The average swimmer has their hips far too low in the water when they swim, with their head up and eyes looking forward.
Ultimately, if you can get your hips up a little higher in the water, your swimming efficiency will improve.


                              Click the link below for video:


Swimming Uphill

Swimming Downhill

Uphill Swimming

Downhill Swimming


Craig Bransby, 08/06/2010

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This week I learnt about trickle breathing in the pool. In order to help your breathing and to combat against taking on water you should breathe gradually out through your nose and mouth (simultaneously) whilst your head is under water.  This way when you turn your head out of the water to breathe in you will have expelled both oxygen and any water from your mouth and nasal passages ready to take in a full breath.

When I practiced this I noticed I could swim further under water. Try it when you next go for a swim!

Julie Gray, 19/05/2010

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Feeling Cold?

If you are swimming in cold water and you're not sure whether you should get out yet, try this test -

Press your finger on the fingernail with the other hand. If it shows red, you're still okay. If it is blue after being pushed, it's time to jump out fast!

Peter Lindop, 17/05/2010

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Land Training for swimmers

I would like to share some ideas about land training for swimming. Getting access to swimming pools may not be easy for many of us and even when we do, pools can be overcrowded and not conducive for length swimming. So what land exercises could be done to assist and improve our swimming? I have often tried different exercises to determine which exercises would have the biggest improvement, only to find minor improvement on most. But I have found one exercise that has made a big improvement and that is the use of Stretchcordz. I bought this item when I was invited to swim the channel, because I knew there would be times when I could not make it to the pool.




The biggest problem with exercises and gym work is that they don’t always transfer well from land to the pool. Land exercises need to replicate the swimming actions as closely as possible to have any effect. This is where Stretchcordz, as opposed to other gym exercises, can offer a type of resistance closer to water resistance and also replicate the movement more closely.

Another benefit for using the Stretchcordz, is that it can be used to improve technique by practising the high elbow catch or Early Vertical Forearm (EVF). The EVF is where the forearm is rotated to vertical as soon as possible in the catch phase and this allows the swimmer to pull backwards with the whole hand and forearm. Stretchcordz will teach the muscles the proper movement and strengthen them where required. This proper catch phase also allows the larger muscles around the shoulder ie. latissimus dorsi and pectorals, to be introduced in the pull and prevent injury to the rotator cuff.

I have been using the Stretchcordz to improve strength and stamina, by breaking the stroke into 2 phases ie. “Catch phase” and the “Push phase”. There are also varying levels of surgical tubing resistance to suit all levels of swimmers. Stretchcordz have been rated the no.1 land training aid in the USA. Although it may sound like I am a “rep” for a swim shop, I do believe that it makes a difference and can be used whenever and wherever to improve strength, power and stamina.

I must also say that I am not against gym work, but doing the correct exercises is important!

Craig Bransby, 27/04/2010

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